School of Business and Management

BUSM117 Risk and Crisis Management


2 (2017/18) 

Module organiser

Professor Perri 6

Module overview

The module will focus on generic concepts in risk management including operational risk, risks of external shock, risks of system failure, risk to customers and clients, and political risk (rather than e.g., credit risk, debt risk, market risk or other forms of financial risk, which will be covered in modules for the MSc in Accounting and Finance). It will examine risk perception and management as challenges, skills and frameworks, and cultivate critical appraisal of risk assumptions and designs, as opposed to teaching particular modelling methods and techniques. The aim module's aim is to enable students to develop critical judgement about risk management, and to avoid using techniques mechanically, which, research has shown, itself gives rise to risks for organisations. For these reasons, this module uses a predominantly qualitative approach.

Crisis management is a central part of risk management. All organisations face crises, which present peculiar management challenges especially for decision-making and not only for public relations. What may begin as an operational crisis may quickly escalate to become a reputational and a financial crisis for an organisation. This module will introduce students to processes of crisis decision-making, dilemmas between crisis centralisation and frontline expertise, challenges of decision-making in conditions of high urgency with limited information, and the relationship between managing a crisis for the presenting issue and managing it for future risks. The question will be explored, to what extent, when, where and why there is evidence that crisis management can stimulate and when it can undermine imperatives for innovation.


60% exam, 40% coursework